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[Untitled: American Fashion and American Department Stores] (1950s circa)

something has gone horribly wrong 8-p
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A pro-mass production view of American fashion.

Great film about Montgomery Wards; marketing class comprised on international students notable one from Russia and one South Asian who wears a turban learn about business through the example of Wards; Russian students talks about the bad Soviet system; Indian students says they still barter in Asia.

21:27:06:01 Great shot pan over table with red and white checkered picnic table cloth, table is covered with various Italian dishes and cups of wine, various disembodied hands reach to plates of food to serve themselves more, salad, olives, grapes, chicken bread, bowl of shredded parmesan cheese, pan ends at large Italian woman eating at head of table. VS Italian man gives cheers “Salute!”; American woman says “Seven courses! But it was good” wiping her face with a napkin; man speaking with Italian accent smoking a cigar tells American woman if she eats more meals like this she will become as plump as the chicken.

21:29:52:21 VS 1950s department store fashion show, audience of women watches as models model new clothes and accessories while another woman narrates what the model is wearing; sign in background on wall behind dress rack reads “Misses Dresses”.

21:30:48:07 VS teacher leads class on marketing, class consists on one young woman and four men, one man is wearing a turban; teacher leads class at a conference table, map of United States behind him with distribution center buildings dispersed over map; one student is Russian and works for the GUM; modern department.

21:31:46:13 Great pan over the GUM department store in Moscow , facing Red Square, several Russian soldiers walk across frame of shot; VS in BW of fashion show in the Gum, VS audience watching models walk down runway.

21:32:24:29 Marketing class seated at conference table, Russian student speaking with poor Russian accent stands up and walks over to the window and delivers a monologue with great sound bites:
“Yes we’ve had to learn to go without our everyday needs. Sometimes I wonder, we don’t have the nice things but we don’t have- when I look at your stores you have everything, acres and acres, and your people are buying everything. You know what it is like in my country”; LS inside American department store, dissolves to interior of the GUM department store in Moscow, VS the GUM, audio track man speaking with Russian accent describes the GUM department store in Soviet Russian, man says American stores a much better then Russian ones and much cheaper; dissolves to VS inside American department store, more great sound bits of Russian man describing American stores “I can’t get over it how in America you take for granted you can buy anything”; Russian student walks back to the conference table and tells class that in Russia “you stand in line and buy a voucher…the state operates the store the kulaks don’t handle any money. By the time you stand in line and get a voucher, the goods may be gone, and no one ever knows when war will begin, maybe next week, maybe a month…”

21:33:42:26 MS teacher with grey hair wearing grey suit and black tie sitting in front of an American flag says that “…we Americans do take our ways for granted” then asks South Asian man wearing a turban how things are in his country; VS student wearing turban says in most Asian countries “we still barter…there is much haggling…we haggle that is how we buy”; teacher pulls out a mail order catalogue saying it is a strictly American way of doing business, the Russian and South Asian man wearing a turban look at the catalogue enthusiastically.

21:34:50:29 VS sepia tone footage of a reenactment of the Chicago fire of 1871; buildings up in flames, people running around frantically, horse-drawn carriage in the river

21:36:50:12 CU disembodied hand signs bottom of letter written in cursive, Montgomery Ward.

21:38:20:02 Great shot of a 1950s prototype for a BW portable television being shaken on machine to test durability, BW cartoon runs on TV set.

21:38:30:26 MS a davenport cushion’s durability is tested; large hammering device slams down on cushion.

21:39:01:07 CU disembodied hands on assembly line assemble wood puzzle for babies, puzzle of a duck assemble in two pieces; pressure cookers moving down conveyor belt; workers working on lawn mowers on assembly line; whitewall tires moving down conveyor belt, workers in background inspect tires; high-angle shot workers in plant inspecting large ice boxes.

21:40:24:08 LS pan over Montgomery Ward department store, parking lot filled with 1950s cars; ribbon cutting ceremony, giant scissor cuts the ribbon; VS huge crowd trying to get into the Montgomery Ward store.

21:41:30:04 car pulls into Ward’s Auto Service garage on snowy and icy winter day; Ward’s mechanics working on car.

21:41:39:06 Row of Montgomery Wards repairmen at work benches, one man is fixing a television, another an electric blender.

21:41:51:03 Man working on presentation of mannequins in a Montgomery Ward’s display window.

21:42:06:28 Woman enters frame and looks at television set in department store.

21:42:36:17 Great shot Montgomery Ward mail order telephone operators, two long rows divided by conveyor belt for processing order, each woman with a head set and her own catalogue to take orders; CU woman on headset taking phone order.

21:43:06:13 VS large Montgomery Wards department store in the suburbs; parking lot packed with cars.

21:44:16:22 VS IBM RAMAC computer; enormous computer in empty room; CU black control panel with blinking red lights.



This movie is part of the collection: Prelinger Archives

Sponsor: Montgomery Ward & Co.
Audio/Visual: sound, color

Creative Commons license: Public Domain Mark 1.0


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Average Rating: 2.00 out of 5 stars2.00 out of 5 stars

Reviewer: Spuzz - 2.00 out of 5 stars2.00 out of 5 stars - October 3, 2012
Subject: I'm Monty Ward, Love me!
A little bit of a boring overview of a Marketing class which are of laughable ethnic stereotypes (I'm really not too sure if the "indian" is wearing his turban right) that seem to dwell upon the fact that it's Monty Ward's way or nothing baby! Nice shots of a "russian" fashion show as well as shopping centers circa 1950's. But the whole MW fawning really gets tiring quick.


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